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George Byrd has been selected as the 2018-2019 Educator of the Year.

George Byrd, the 2018-2019 Educator of the Year at
Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School


Mr. George Byrd, auto body instructor at Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School, has been selected as the 2018-2019 Educator of the Year. Mr. Byrd is known for being a passionate, hard-working, caring and dedicated instructor.

When Superintendent Dr. Chrys Harttraft and Principal Diane Ziegler walked into Mr. Byrd’s classroom to announce the award, Byrd said it was “one of the biggest surprises in my life.” Mr. Byrd went on to add, “I had no idea what they were there for. It wasn’t my birthday yet.”

As a 1967 graduate of Somerset County Vocational & Technical Schools, Mr. Byrd knew when he was in high school that he wanted to return and teach the Auto Body Program. After spending some years working in the industry and even operating his own business, Mr. Byrd returned to SCVTHS in 1992 to achieve his goal. He successfully completed his alternate route courses at The College of New Jersey and has been in the classroom since.

Mr. Byrd’s favorite part of his job is working with the students. He remembers being young and not having much guidance, so he’s made it a point to keep that focus in mind when dealing with his own students. He attributes much of the students’ success to his one-on-one approach and keeping things fun. “It’s about them,” Mr. Byrd said, “I want to give more than I had.” Mr. Byrd went on to add, “Teaching keeps you young. I am happy to be doing what I’m doing.” 

Mr. Byrd is a resident of Somerset, where he resides with his wife Van. He is the proud parent of five children and four grandchildren. In his spare time, Mr. Byrd enjoys fishing, grilling and spending time with his family. Additionally, as a self-proclaimed car fanatic, Mr. Byrd’s passion keeps him busy outside of the classroom.


For more information contact James Strickhart at (908) 526-8900, x7169 or